When I began quilting, I couldn’t imagine making more than one quilt at a time. I couldn’t imagine making one of a kind quilts for myself. I’ve made many quilts over the years but very few have been one of a kind. My current favorite quilt pattern is a quilting variation of a traditional block called an ‘Innocence’ block. I have several in my collection. I like them because they are a modern, abstract interpretation of the block. In addition to this quilt, I have two others in the making, one is also a variation of the Innocence block. They are a joy to sew and I enjoy seeing them come together.
My first Innocence Block
I’ve made several Innocence Blocks but the one shown in the pictures above is my first. It is one of my favorites. The reason I love it so much is because I used the exact same fabric for the entire top. I like the simplicity of this quilt.
The pattern is from the Quilter’s Treasures book from C&T Publishing.
To make this quilt, you must cut the fabric squares from the pattern and sew together using a simple block. There are many possibilities for the size, orientation and design. It’s the perfect quilting pattern to learn the art of quilting with. If you have more Innocence blocks in your collection, share them with the world.
I don’t use a pattern for my quilts. Instead, I design my quilts after the block. I’ll have ideas floating around in my head about what I want the quilt to look like. Then, I’ll start sketching it out with paper. I like to start with the blocks I’ve already made. In my sketching phase, I’ll sketch the block as it’s oriented on my design wall and decide where to place the blocks, if the blocks need to be inverted or rotated.
In my sketching phase, I usually make a large copy of my design on a piece of paper. I then draw around the block using the paper as a guide.
When I’m happy with my sketch, I mark the center of the block and make a list of all the fabric that I’ll use in my top. I also make a list of the colors and fabrics for the blocks to the left and right of the center.
My finished Innocence Block
When I make my first block, I always cut the fabrics so that I have a minimum of waste. I find it very satisfying to sew one square at a time and have it come together perfectly without cutting or trimming.
Then, when I’m finished with one block, I’ll cut it to half or quarter size. I often use this method of cutting when I’m designing. This allows me to look at the block with fresh eyes. I’ll then sketch out the next block. I’ll continue making this way until I’m happy with the design.
In this Innocence block I used a mixture of solids and prints, it was quite easy to do. I started with the prints and added the solids as I added them. I really enjoy this style of quilting. The color range of my fabric is limited by the colors available from my stash. This Innocence block is a great design to sew and I’ll sew a few more of these before I move on to more complicated designs.
Sewing the block together
Innocence blocks are not a difficult pattern to sew. As I said, it’s a simple block that uses just a few fabric selections. Most blocks use a similar number of fabrics.
For this quilt, I used a fabric called ‘Nora’ by Moda. It’s an interesting fabric and I really like the texture of it. I was happy with the fabric as it was. I had a nice range of colors and had just the right amount of prints and solids. I added some green, orange and purple solids but not a lot. I wanted to keep the color balance neutral.
The blocks look like this when they’re sewn together.
I chose to quilt my quilt top in a vertical strip design. If I’d made this quilt with a horizontal design, it would have looked like a ‘wall hanging’. I don’t like ‘wall hanging’ designs in my quilts, so I prefer to quilt the top in the opposite direction. I prefer to have a more modern, geometric look to my quilts, and vertical designs fit better with the modern trend in quilting.